We are delighted to welcome a fantastic range of speakers to IAAF Athletics Connect 2017. This high calibre cast are ready to share their experience and invaluable knowledge, covering topics relevant to many aspects of our sport.
Learn more about the speakers below and use the link to view the full agenda.
Sebastian Coe is Chancellor of Loughborough University, Executive Chairman of CSM Sport and Entertainment and a member of the IOC Tokyo 2020 Coordination Committee and council member of Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF).
He was Chairman of the London 2012 Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, having previously been Chairman of the London 2012 bid company.
Seb set 12 world records during his athletics career. At the Olympic Games in Moscow in 1980 he won gold in the 1500m and silver in the 800m, a feat which he repeated in Los Angeles in 1984.
He retired from competitive athletics in 1990 and became a Member of Parliament and Private Secretary to William Hague.
In 2002 he was made a Peer. He received a Knighthood in the 2006 New Year’s Honours List and in 2013 received his Companion of Honour in recognition of the successful delivery of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London. Seb is also a Laureus World Sport Academy Member.
Katharine is a rare Athlete who had outstanding success at both junior and senior level athletics. Having been the fastest girl in the world aged 14, 12 years later she became the fastest woman in the world over 400m. Since retiring from Athletics, Katharine has become a regular guest on TV and Radio shows which include A Question of Sport, Pointless and Celebrity Mastermind.
She is the only female TV lead Commentator in Athletics, which has seen her working at numerous Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, & European Championships.
Katharine is an extremely experienced Live Events Presenter and has hosted major Athletics events and Championships here in the UK, Europe and America. This role is often extended to include live trackside interviews with Athletes as they finish their competition, which in 2014 included the inaugural “Invictus Games”, when Prince Harry personally thanked her for helping to make the Event such as huge success.
Katharine worked on the 2015 World Championships in Beijing for IAAF TV and Radio and as the first female lead Athletics commentator for BBC at the Great North City Games. Then in 2016 Katharine presented and commentated at the main British Athletics Events and was a lead Commentator at the IAAF Indoor World Championships in Portland.
Ato Boldon is a four-time Olympic medal winner, and was the 200m World Champion in 1997. He was Trinidad and Tobago’s first world champion in athletics, as well as its first world junior champion, becoming the first to ever win the sprint double in Korea in 1992. He was also Commonwealth champion, winning the 100m in 1998 in Kuala Lumpur in a still-unbroken record of 9.88 seconds.
Ato has now been a sports broadcaster in the USA for over a decade, first at ESPN and now at NBC Sports, as the lead track and field analyst, where, in 2013, he became the only athletics analyst in US history ever nominated for an Emmy award. He has expanded his repertoire for NBC Sports, in recent years, to Winter Olympic coverage, as well as NASCAR racing. In 2016, SportsIllustrated.com named him its Television Analyst of the Year. Ato is also coach to some of the planet’s fastest young women, including Khalifa St. Fort, the 2015 world youth 100m silver medalist and 2015 world championship 4x100m relay bronze medalist for Trinidad and Tobago. Ato has also been a private pilot since 2005.
Chair - IAAF Athletes' Commission
Rožle Prezelj is a former high jumper, event in which he still holds the National Record of Slovenia. He competed three times in the Olympic Games, reaching the Final in the Beijing Olympic Final. He also competed in four IAAF World Championships. Additionally, in 2001, in Amsterdam, Rozle became the European High Jump U23 Champion.
During his Athletics career he successfully managed to combine top performances and training with his Law studies. In 2013, he is graduated with honours from the Law Faculty of the University of Ljubljana and in 2015 he continued with a Doctorate Degree from the Law Faculty at the University of Ljubljana in the field of Sports Law and Athletes’ rights.
His professional career is focused on law and athletes. In 2014 he became the first Athletes Ombudsman in Slovenia. He is also a Lay judge at the District Court in Kranj.
In his free time, he is a coach at his Athletics school for more than 300 young athletes.
Executive Director Of ASA – Swiss Arbitration Association
Alex McLin is the Executive Director of ASA – the Swiss Arbitration Association, based in Geneva and Zurich. He sits as arbitrator at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne and the Arbitration Court of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Paris.
He holds a number of roles in international sport, including as member of the Governance Task Force of the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF), the IAAF Working Group on Governance and Integrity Reform (WGGIR), the IAAF Legal Commission, and the World Rowing (FISA) Ethics Group.
Alex is the former CEO / Secretary General of the International Equestrian Federation (FEI). He was previously general counsel of a multinational IP licensing business and advisor to the World Economic Forum (Davos). He holds a J.D. from the Duke University School of Law and is a member of the New York Bar.
CEO World Rugby
Brett Gosper is the Chief Executive Officer of the World Rugby the Managing Director of Rugby World Cup Limited and a former advertising executive and rugby player.
Prior to his appointment to World Rugby (formally the IRB) in July 2012, Mr Gosper had a successful international career in advertising which included being CEO of Euro RSCG Wnek Gosper London, CEO of TBWA New York,CEO of McCann Erickson New York and President of McCann Erickson USA. Most recently as the President and CEO of Europe, Middle East, Africa for McCann Worldgroup.
Connie Henry is a former international athlete. On retiring from athletics she founded the nations foremost Athletics for Social Change Charity, Track Academy. Her other qualifications as a fully qualified teacher and sports broadcaster, means she is perfectly placed to understand what it takes to develop stars of the future.
Director Of Education And Standards - Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI)
Harald Müller is Director of Education and Standards at the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), the world governing body of horse sport. He holds a PhD in sociology, focused on development in athletics.
An amateur athlete for 18 years, he studied Physical Education at the German Sport University, Cologne, where he later became a senior lecturer in Athletics and Weightlifting. He also worked as a Decathlon and Heptathlon coach for more than 20 years. After contributing to the development of the IAAF’s Coach Education and Certification System (CECS), for which he produced numerous books and videos, he joined the IAAF in 2004 as Senior Manager for Education.
He was a CECS Lecturer in more than 30 countries and managed biomechanics projects at IAAF World Championships. At the FEI, he has developed education curricula and digital tools, including a Clean Sport database and toolkit, and, more recently, an online education system, FEI Campus.
Frédéric Chevance is a professional of the media and entertainment industries with more than 20 years experience. He now invests and advises companies and start-ups with projects at the cross roads of media, content and digital. Vogo is one of his latest investments where he is an active partner working on business development.
Chief Commercialization Officer - Kenzen
Heidi Lehmann heads the retail and commercialization efforts for Kenzen. She is a mobile technology, digital health, and media entrepreneur focused on wearable technology and data as the next phase of mobile computing. Heidi founded of one of the first mobile advertising and data platforms, Third Screen Media (acquired by AOL for $100mm+) and an early employee and Head of Sales for automotive advertising and data company Autosite.com (acquired by Autoweb for $20mm). Heidi was voted a 2015 Woman of Influence by The New York Business Journal, 2014 Most Influential Woman in Tech, 2011 Female Founder to Watch by Women 2.0, a 2011 Most Influential Woman in Wireless by Fierce Wireless, and a 2010 Woman to Watch by Mobile Marketer.
Goffin has been nominated for five Emmy Awards, three Producer Guild Awards, and won a People’s Choice Award for American Idol. He has been featured in TheNew York Times, TV Guide, Variety, USA Today and the Official American Idol Farewell Season Television Documentary. He is a regular lecturer on reality television at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. Goffin graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania and in 1997 received an MFA in Film and Television from USC (The Peter Stark Motion Picture Producing Program). His master’s project won a student Golden Globe.
Goffin was an Executive Producer with Mark Burnett Productions, Fox Sports and FremantleMedia. With Burnett, he produced the Emmy award-winning adventure race Eco-Challenge. Goffin supervised the first four cycles of American Idol, which became the biggest show in television history. Burnett tapped Goffin to co-create and executive produce Rock Star: INXS, a revolutionary 3-night per week music event competition that aired in on CBS and live in over 70 countries. Rock Star was the first show with live international public voting. Goffin also developed and executive produced with Steven Spielberg the Fox reality competition show On the Lot, Spielberg’s first network television show in 10 years. In the digital world, Goffin has produced over 5000 videos for brands like Walmart, Intel, Kleenex, New Era Puma, Hyundai, Scion,General Mills and MasterCard. He has won an Effie award and was named Walmart Marketing Supplier of the year in 2015.
The Chair - Athletics Integrity Unit
A barrister with a strong background in both Sport governance and Sports management who for 13 years until June 2016 was Director General of the World Anti-Doping Agency. Prior to this, he held a number of sports governance positions in New Zealand including Tennis New Zealand, Sport New Zealand Board, Chair of New Zealand Sports Drug Agency and as a member of the Olympic Executive Committee.
As a lawyer David has represented both governing bodies and athletes. He has argued for and defended clients before many tribunals including the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Major Events Development Manager - British Athletics
Stuart is an experienced sports industry professional, who has worked for and with UK Athletics since 2004. With experience of coach education, athletics development and schools competition, Stuart has most recently been working on UK Athletics’ portfolio of televised and major events.
In leading the delivery of the LEAP programme, Stuart has also been heavily involved with the London 2017 Inspiration programme, which has been created to maximise the athletics development benefits of the IAAF World Athletics Championships London 2017.
Bill Glad is the currently the Head of the President’s Cabinet at European Athletics in Lausanne, Switzerland, having been the organisation’s Head of Development from 2004 to 2015. Prior to joining European Athletics he was the Deputy Development Director at the IAAF from 1986 to 1994. He continues to work with the IAAF as a Consultant Editor of its quarterly technical journal New Studies in Athletics.
Dame Valerie Adams
Dame Valerie Kasanita Adams DNZM, formerly known as Valerie Viliis a New Zealand shot putter. She is a four-time World champion, three time World Indoor champion, two-time Olympic and three-time Commonwealth champion. She currently holds the New Zealand, Oceanian, Commonwealth and equal World Championship records with a personal best throw of 21.24 metres.
Adams won a silver medal at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro with a distance of 20.42 m behind US athlete Michelle Carter.
Adams is one of only nine athletes (along with Usain Bolt, Veronica Campbell-Brown, Jacques Freitag, Yelena Isinbayeva, Kirani James, Jana Pittman, Dani Samuels, and David Storl) to win world championships at the youth, junior, and senior level of an athletic event. She is the first woman to win four consecutive individual titles at the world track and field championships.
Global Head Of Sponsorship & Events, HSBC
Giles Morgan – Global Head of Sponsorship and Events at HSBC, is one of the world’s leading international sponsorship practitioners, with over 24 years of experience in the international marketing industry. Since 2005, Giles has led HSBC’s international sponsorship strategy and portfolio with over 120 sponsored events in 30 countries in sports, arts and CSR. Highlights include the WGC HSBC Champions in Shanghai, the inaugural HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series that takes place in 10 cities around the world, the All England Championships and HSBC’s recent title sponsorship of British Cycling.
Giles was also responsible for HSBC’s 150th Anniversary in 2015 and is also responsible for the HSBC Airport Global Media strategy – one of the most high recognised and successful brand platforms in the world. Giles is a sought-after key note speaker in the Sports Industry around the world and is also a regular media commentator. He is a distinctly average golfer and more passable pub pianist who enjoys skiing, tennis and the history of Welsh Rugby.
Position held in the IAAF
IAAF Council Member and Oceania Area Representative from August 2011
IAAF Development Commission, Member
IAAF Finance and Budget Commission, Member
Positions held in National Federation
1982 to date Executive Board Member
1992 – 1995, 2004 to date General Secretary
National Technical Official
Hamad Kalkaba Malboum
Area President (Africa)
Senior Officer of the Cameroon Defence Forces
Positions held within the IAAF
2007 – present, Africa Area Group Representative/Council Member
Positions held within Member Federation
1993 – 2001 President of the Cameroon Athletics Federation
Member of the Board of Directors of the Cameroon Athletics Federation
Dahlan Jumaan Al Hamad
Area President (Asia)
Dahlan Jaman Al-Hamad, born in Doha, Qatar on January 18, 1957 in a well-known Qatari Family and a highly influential person in the country with excellent management in sports background, after completing his university from Qatar he went to USA to continue his further studies and completed his Graduation with Bachelor in Finance, Master’s Degree in Management and Masters in Military Sciences.
He hold the position as Vice-President of International Association of Athletics Federation, President of Asian Athletics Association, Maj. Gen. in Qatar Armed Forces, President of Qatar Military Sports Association since 1998 & Vice-Chairman and Executive Director of Doha 2019 Organizing Committee and several other sports within IAAF and Asia.
His mission is to develop our Sports and educate people more about Athletics by transferring knowledge and values related to athletic and to work on new concepts and events to present a different role of Athletics Sports.
Svein Arne Hansen
Area President (Europe)
Hansen, born on 6 May 1946, is a stamp dealer by profession and the owner of S.A. Hansen SA. His Sports Administration career began as a Member of the Norwegian Athletics Federation Junior Committee between 1968 and 1972.
He was Assistant Meeting Director of the Bislett Games from 1973 to 1984 before serving as Meeting Director of the legendary one-day meeting for 24 years. In that time the Bislett Games was part of the IAAF Grand Prix, Golden Four, Golden League and now Diamond League.
Hansen was a member of the IAAF Grand Prix Commission from 1985 to 1998 and a Member of the IAAF Golden League working group from 1997 to 2009.
He also served as President of Euro-Meetings from 1998 to 2006.
Hansen was Vice President of the Norwegian Athletics Federation from 2001 to 2003 and President of the Federation from 2003 to 2015.
He previously served as Vice President of European Athletics from 2007 to 2011 as part of the Executive Board, being Chairman of the European Athletics Development Committee during that period.
Roberto Gesta De Melo
Area President (Consudatle)
Roberto Gesta de Melo graduated in Law at the University of Amazonas, Brazil in 1968. He was an exporter of rubber and importer of sports goods for many years.
When he was 15 years old, he founded a club for young athletes in Manaus, his home town, and became its first President. After that, he was President of the Amazonas Law and Philosophy Schools Sports Associations and of the Amazonas State University Sports Federation.
He was Secretary of Sports of the State of Amazonas for 15 years and was President of the Amazonas Table Tennis, Volleyball and Athletics Federations. He was also Vice-President of the Brazilian Volleyball Confederation for 9 years.
He was elected President of the Brazilian Athletics Confederation in 1987, becoming Member of the Brazilian Olympic Committee and remained in that position until 2013. In 1991, he was elected IAAF Council Member and in 1993 President of the South American Athletics Confederation. Later on he was chosen to be President of the Ibero American Athletics Association.
He is one of the most important collectors of Olympic memorabilia in the world.
Area President (North America & Caribbean)
Chairman of the IAAF Coaches Commission – 2005 to date
President of the Central American and Caribbean Athletic Confederation (CACAC) 1998 to 2011– Regional Governing Body for 34 IAAF Member Federations
President of the Association of Panamerican Athletics – APA – 2011 to date Hemisphere Governing Body for 41 IAAF Member Federations
President of the North America, Central America and Caribbean Athletics Association and Area Representative/IAAF Council Member – August 2013 to date
President of the North America, Central America and Caribbean Coaches Association (NACACTFCA) – 1998 to date
Member of the IAAF Technical Committee for 12 years
Consultant and Lecturer for the IAAF Academy for the Americas
Board Member of NACAC, IAAF Regional Development Center-San Juan, Member of the board of directors of the Teodoro Moscoso World’s Best 10 K – an IAAF Gold Label Race
Editor of the IAAF-NACAC Technical Bulletin for 11 years
Editorial Board Member of the IAAF New Studies in Athletics for 10 years
Leading Sport for Facebook across EMEA, Jerry has over 15 years of sports media and marketing experience. Prior to joining Facebook, Jerry led the Digital Strategy for Chelsea FC where he focused on driving the relationship the club has with its millions of fans globally and leveraging this asset to drive greater commercial value for the club. The experience he has gained working for both governing body and club in Media, Marketing, CRM, Digital and Sponsorship gives him a unique understanding of each of these verticals and how digital can blur and disrupt traditional models to drive innovative experiences for fans and greater value for rights holders and sponsors.
Claude is Executive Director of Digital, Production & Sport Solutions at Infront Sports & Media. He also serves as Chairman of Omnigon (the world’s leading digital solutions company) and HBS (the global leader in Host Broadcast solutions for major sports events). He leads an integrated cross-functional team that seeks to capture new audiences and revenue streams for sports partners and improved ROI for sponsors. The team focuses on delivering innovation in television production; the creation of new, interactive digital content offerings; development of new distribution solutions; expanded use of social platforms to drive new audience growth and the creation of integrated marketing campaigns that deliver for advertisers.
President of the International Triathlon Union
Marisol Casado was born in Madrid in 1956 and started her sport career in running and field hockey while furthering her education. She competed in the first triathlon in Spain and won the race. Marisol is President of the International Triathlon Union having been founding members of both the Spanish Triathlon Federation, and Iberoamerican Triathlon Association. Now a member of the International Olympic Committee, Marisol is currently involved in Public Affairs and Social Development through Sport and Evaluation for the Games of XXXIII Olympiad in 2024. Marisol also serves on the council of SportAccord.
Casado has a degree in Philosophy and Hispanic Language and an MBA in Sport Management and lives in Madrid with her husband Joaquín and daughter Berta.
Co-Founder & Head of US & UK Markets at First Vision
Ilya Kissin (Co-Founder, Business Development). Ilya leads coverage of First Vision in US and UK markets. Ilya’s main background is Investment Banking in Media & Telecom sector at HSBC Bank in London where Ilya originated and executed M&A transactions in Central & Eastern Europe. MSc in Finance & BSc in Business Administration.
TechRadar Global Editor-in-Chief
Patrick Goss is the Global Editor-in-Chief and founder of TechRadar – one of the biggest consumer tech websites on the planet with in excess of 25 million readers a month. He is a classically trained journalist who started out writing about sport before making the jump to technology – which makes him pretty much the only person on the planet to have professionally covered both a World Cup final and an iPhone launch.
Maria Clarke, is the owner of specialist sports law firm, Maria Clarke Lawyers, in Auckland, New Zealand.
Maria is regarded as New Zealand’s leading sports lawyer. Over her 25 years practising law she has acted for
national sports organisations and athletes in New Zealand and Australia from nearly every sport on the
programmes of the Olympic and Commonwealth Games and beyond. She appears regularly before the New
Zealand Sports Tribunal – a body she was instrumental in establishing in 2000.
Her place in sports law was recently acknowledged by her ranking in the top band of sports lawyers in New
Zealand in the 2017 Chambers Asia Pacific rankings.
Maria has been a member of the IAAF Legal Commission for 10 years and since 2016, has chaired that
She is also a member of the Legal Commission for the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC)
and is also a member of the IOC Marketing Commission.
In recent years Maria’s legal practice has focused on governance and integrity in sport. She has advised in
excess of 15 national sports organisations on wholesale governance changes including merging and
amalgamating their constituent bodies and designing new governance structures.
More recently, she has been called on to advise other international sports federations on governance issues.
In February 2016 she was appointed by the IAAF President to Chair of the IAAF Working Group for
Governance and Integrity Reform. This Working Group continues to have oversight of the Reform including
Co-Founder & CEO of First Vision
Roger Antunez (Co-Founder and CEO) Roger has 10 years of experience across Broadcasting & Media technology sector, including a Hardware company he co-founded in 2010 (Wings for Media) which raised €1.5m, and went from product-design to serial-manufacturing and had sales across Europe. MBA & Engineering education.